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How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

Do you feel you’re always criticising and judging everyone, yourself included? Do you feel bad about it afterwards? You’re certainly not alone! Read on to discover how you can judge less and start to accept things the way they are.

Why do we judge others?

We all make judgements about others; it’s part of human nature. We judge people as soon as we meet them, based merely on their appearance, their clothes and their manners. The problem is we don't really know them at all.

We also pass judgement on those we do know. They do or say something that upsets us, and we feel disappointed or angry with them. We don't try to understand their actions: we just think worse of the person.


Why do we judge ourselves?

Judging ourselves against others is one way in which we establish our identities, for good or bad. We may judge our self-worth based on how our attractiveness, intelligence and wealth compare to others. Self-criticism often stems from a lack of self- confidence and anxiety. Bach Flower Mix 44 is formulated to drive away fears while supporting positive emotions and self-belief.

Instagram and Facebook bombard us with glamorous images. But in a way, this is just stage dressing, and we can never know what’s really going on behind the scenes unless we know the person well. Judging ourselves against others who appear more successful, prettier or wealthier is a sure way to suffering anxiety and stress.

We make social judgements about ourselves because we are not completely happy with who we are. It might not be possible ever to be 100% satisfied with ourselves, (and we’d be pretty smug if we were!). However, rather than criticising ourselves, it’s better to self-assess. We can decide how near we are to being the person we want to be without comparing ourselves to others.

Learn how to judge less

While it’s human nature to judge others, it’s not always helpful to us to do so. Being judgemental doesn’t make us happy. These tips will help you to judge less and be more accepting.

1. Walk in their shoes

When you find yourself passing judging someone because of what they’ve done or how they look, imagine their backstory and the circumstances that might have caused them to act that way. Picture yourself walking in their shoes. Instead of instantly labelling them, try to communicate with them and find out their story. You’ve probably had similar experiences and can remember how they affected the way you felt and acted. Trying to understand someone is the first step towards acceptance.

2. Accept

Once you’ve tried to understand, then just accept. The world is what it is, and most things are beyond your control. Once you’ve acknowledged that you’re unlikely to be able to change the situation, you can stop feeling frustrated, inadequate, angry or envious and can start to move on from these negative feelings.

3. Be curious

Be curious and live your life as fully as possible. Packing in as many new and exciting experiences as you can will crowd out self-criticism and leave little room for judging others.

4. Avoid universal judgement

Just because you’ve judged a person as lacking a particular skill, don’t fall into the trap of applying this assessment to all areas of their life. Nearly everyone is better at some things than they are at others: if a person is a poor communicator, they might be great at maths and vice versa.

5. Observe rather than evaluate

We need to distinguish between evaluations (judgements) and observations. Evaluations that we make when judging yourself are just opinions, such as “I’m foolish”, or “I can’t motivate myself”. The same applies to our evaluations of others: “He’s doing that all wrong” or “She was very rude to me”. Rather than evaluating a situation, say what you see and express your own feelings regarding the situation. For example, “I’m cross because she pushed to the front of the queue”.

This pause for reflection allows you to judge the action, not the person. Pushing to the front of the queue is a rude action, for sure, but perhaps the person thought they had a good reason for acting in such a way? As the old saying has it, judge the sin, not the sinner.

Can we ever be non-judgemental?

The judgements we make about others are an unavoidable part of life, but we can all learn to be a bit less quick to judge others and ourselves. Developing new habits and a more positive way of looking at the world will take time and practice, but it’s well worth it as it will make your life happier.

Created by Tom Vermeersch ()

Tom Vermeersch

Tom Vermeersch is a certified Psychologist and Bach flower expert with more than 30 years of experience.

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How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)
How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

Do you feel you’re always criticising and judging everyone, yourself included? Do you feel bad about it afterwards? You’re certainly not alone! Read on to discover how you can judge less and start to accept things the way they are.

Why do we judge others?

We all make judgements about others; it’s part of human nature. We judge people as soon as we meet them, based merely on their appearance, their clothes and their manners. The problem is we don't really know them at all.

We also pass judgement on those we do know. They do or say something that upsets us, and we feel disappointed or angry with them. We don't try to understand their actions: we just think worse of the person.

Bach flowers personal mix

Bach flowers personal mix:

  • Personal combination
  • Based on your symptoms and character
  • Bach flower remedy personally selected by Tom
  • Fast and good results
Discover how Personal Bach flowers remedy - Wizard can help you

Why do we judge ourselves?

Judging ourselves against others is one way in which we establish our identities, for good or bad. We may judge our self-worth based on how our attractiveness, intelligence and wealth compare to others. Self-criticism often stems from a lack of self- confidence and anxiety. Bach Flower Mix 44 is formulated to drive away fears while supporting positive emotions and self-belief.

Instagram and Facebook bombard us with glamorous images. But in a way, this is just stage dressing, and we can never know what’s really going on behind the scenes unless we know the person well. Judging ourselves against others who appear more successful, prettier or wealthier is a sure way to suffering anxiety and stress.

We make social judgements about ourselves because we are not completely happy with who we are. It might not be possible ever to be 100% satisfied with ourselves, (and we’d be pretty smug if we were!). However, rather than criticising ourselves, it’s better to self-assess. We can decide how near we are to being the person we want to be without comparing ourselves to others.

Learn how to judge less

While it’s human nature to judge others, it’s not always helpful to us to do so. Being judgemental doesn’t make us happy. These tips will help you to judge less and be more accepting.

1. Walk in their shoes

When you find yourself passing judging someone because of what they’ve done or how they look, imagine their backstory and the circumstances that might have caused them to act that way. Picture yourself walking in their shoes. Instead of instantly labelling them, try to communicate with them and find out their story. You’ve probably had similar experiences and can remember how they affected the way you felt and acted. Trying to understand someone is the first step towards acceptance.

2. Accept

Once you’ve tried to understand, then just accept. The world is what it is, and most things are beyond your control. Once you’ve acknowledged that you’re unlikely to be able to change the situation, you can stop feeling frustrated, inadequate, angry or envious and can start to move on from these negative feelings.

3. Be curious

Be curious and live your life as fully as possible. Packing in as many new and exciting experiences as you can will crowd out self-criticism and leave little room for judging others.

4. Avoid universal judgement

Just because you’ve judged a person as lacking a particular skill, don’t fall into the trap of applying this assessment to all areas of their life. Nearly everyone is better at some things than they are at others: if a person is a poor communicator, they might be great at maths and vice versa.

5. Observe rather than evaluate

We need to distinguish between evaluations (judgements) and observations. Evaluations that we make when judging yourself are just opinions, such as “I’m foolish”, or “I can’t motivate myself”. The same applies to our evaluations of others: “He’s doing that all wrong” or “She was very rude to me”. Rather than evaluating a situation, say what you see and express your own feelings regarding the situation. For example, “I’m cross because she pushed to the front of the queue”.

This pause for reflection allows you to judge the action, not the person. Pushing to the front of the queue is a rude action, for sure, but perhaps the person thought they had a good reason for acting in such a way? As the old saying has it, judge the sin, not the sinner.

Can we ever be non-judgemental?

The judgements we make about others are an unavoidable part of life, but we can all learn to be a bit less quick to judge others and ourselves. Developing new habits and a more positive way of looking at the world will take time and practice, but it’s well worth it as it will make your life happier.


Marie Pure

Other articles


Let's make 2021 better than 2020

Let's make 2021 better than 2020

For many people, 2020 has been one of the worst years they can remember. The COVID -19 pandemic and social unrest have changed our lives in ways we would not have believed possible a year ago. And when January 2021 comes around, we're still likely to be facing many challenges. Can 2021 be a better year?

Read the complete article

Why it's never too late to change

Why it's never too late to change

People always think: that’s just me. I'm not good at 'X', that is just my character. Here are some reasons why it's never too late to change.

Read the complete article

Dealing with British Summer Time

Dealing with British Summer Time

Some people are overly sensitive to the time change and it can take days, if not weeks, for them to feel right again, while others barely even notice. 

Read the complete article

How to prove your value

How to prove your value

Feel like everyone takes you for granted? Whether it's working late to prepare a presentation or cooking a special birthday meal for your partner, it's nice to be appreciated when you've made an extra effort. And if it seems as if people don't notice, you might feel as if no one values you.

Read the complete article

goede-voornemens

A new year, a new me

It’s such a positive thing to do and hope springs eternal, so why not commit yourself to a change this year? Here’s our tips on how to stick to your new year’s resolutions.

Read the complete article

What makes it so hard to go back to school

What makes it so hard to go back to school?

Going back to school during a pandemic is a new experience for everyone, and it's understandable if children are feeling anxious about it. We take a look at some of the issues and how you can help your child to get ready for returning to the classroom.

Read the complete article

Even the brightest minds have setbacks!

Even the brightest minds have setbacks!

We all want to be successful but many of us find the path to achieving our dreams is blocked by our fear of failure. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, go backpacking around the world or start up a new business, you need to accept that you might fail many times over before you achieve success.

Read the complete article

I don't want to!

I don't want to!

Motivation can be somewhat elusive - some days, you just can't seem to make yourself do the stuff you don't want to. But putting things off just leads to stress, frustration and a sense of guilt.

Read the complete article

Top 5 nonsensical reasons to have doubts about yourself

Top 5 nonsensical reasons to have doubts about yourself

It happens to everyone at times: we start doubting ourselves. We worry about the decisions and whether we can face future challenges that life has in store. And sometimes we feel that we just aren't good enough.

Read the complete article

Is your sex life putting your relationship at risk

Is your sex life putting your relationship at risk?

Sexual desire is a complex interaction of hormones, emotions and well-being. When your partner is not as interested in sex as you are, it’s rarely a rejection of you as a person. So it’s essential to be as empathetic as you can regarding your differing libidos.

Read the complete article

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